How to make content that keeps audiences hooked throughout the pandemic

Lockdowns and continuing restrictions across the world have seen us all finding new ways of staying entertained. Whether your forte has become sourdough focaccia, or scrolling through funny content online as light relief from the news cycle, it’s no surprise that we’re spending more time watching videos than ever before.

We have seen huge increases in viewers across our channels over the last six months. Total global views on our 5-Minute Crafts Facebook page were up 20% over the first six months of the year and new subscribers jumped by a staggering 82%.

Attracting a larger audience during such an unusual period of time is noteworthy, but turning casual viewers into subscribers is an opportunity no creator can afford to miss.

Adapt to new content trends
Brands should always keep an eye on popular trends and assess how best to tap into them. But simply jumping on a bandwagon isn’t enough. Review whether it fits with your brand values, and the needs of the audience you’re attempting to reach.

Consider how they prefer to engage, and which platforms will be the most impactful in facilitating the type of connection you’re looking to promote.

Follow the audience onto new platforms
Over the course of 2020 we’ve seen a shift in the social media landscape. Whereas in the past the likes of Facebook and Twitter owned the space, there’s been an ongoing fragmentation of audiences. TikTok came up fast, inspiring new features like Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts. Pinterest has had a resurgence, with video views up 240% year-on-year.

Understanding the most popular new channels, and how audiences are using them, is key to remaining relevant. Managing channels successfully involves significant time and resources, so it’s best not to spread efforts too thinly. We always evolve our strategies with a test and learn approach – something which has worked well during our launch onto TikTok.

Provide content global viewers want
It has been a tough year all round and escapism is a key part of why people watch entertaining video content. Research earlier this year by Channel Factory found 80% of consumers go to YouTube to improve their mood as they stay home and practice social distancing.

The content that we produce across our channels is designed to be positive and mood-boosting. From crafting hacks, to riddles and animations, we want to tap into peoples’ need for some light relief. If our growing follower numbers are anything to go by, it seems this desire to laugh and learn isn’t going anywhere.

When you put aside the trends, most people use these platforms for the same reason: they’re looking for something or someone to connect with, in an increasingly disjointed world. Brands that can be of the moment, while striking the balance between authority and authenticity, will ultimately win the audience over.

Written by Michael Boccacino, director of content partnerships at media publishers TheSoul Publishing


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